Chocolate Manufacturer Ritter Establishes U.S. Subsidiary to Drive Brand Growth

Ritter Sport USA Appoints Confectionery Industry Veteran, Ralf Hilpuesch, as CEO

WALDENBUCH / CHICAGO – March 25, 2024 – Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co. KG, well known throughout the world for its popular chocolate brand, Ritter Sport, announced the next phase in its plan for the company’s accelerated growth within the United States. The family-owned company has recently foundeda new subsidiary in Chicago and appointed industry veteran, Ralf Hilpuesch, as CEO of Ritter Sport USA.

Hilpuesch, a well-respected industry leader with 30 years of confectionery experience, previously served 13 years as President and CEO of Storck North America. During that time, Storck grew into one of the most successful and reputable candy companies in the US and Canada, and Werther’s Original became an iconic brand and leader in caramel.

“We are pleased to welcome an executive as well regarded as Ralf Hilpuesch to lead our growing presence in the U.S. market,” said Malte Dammann, Ritter’s Global Chief Demand Officer. “In his remarkable career to date, Ralf has demonstrated his profound knowledge of the market, his ability to build exceptional teams, and his talent for successfully establishing brands.”

In his new role, Hilpuesch will lead the company’s new U.S.-based operations, reflecting Ritter Sport’s commitment to expand its business in the world’s largest confectionery market, and to engage with all business partners and ultimately American consumers in a profoundly new way.

The company’s dedication to its people, quality brands, and sustainability are principles that Hilpuesch shares.

“I am extremely proud to be part of the Ritter Sport family, a brand that I’ve loved since my childhood in Germany,” said Hilpuesch. “I have a deep respect for this historic family business that has continually lived up to its purpose of growing in a strategic and sustainable way. Ritter Sport is truly a beloved chocolate brand enjoyed by countless fans in Europe and more than 100 countries worldwide. I’m grateful to be given the opportunity to make it a favorite chocolate brand in the U.S., as well.”

In his CEO role at Ritter Sport USA, Hilpuesch will lead the company’s growth initiatives and bring his strategic vision to further enhance the company’s presence throughout the U.S.

About Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co. KG

Established in 1912, the family-owned company is based in the German town of Waldenbuch, with a second production facility in Breitenbrunn, Austria and subsidiaries in other international markets. The company currently employs approximately 1,900 people and achieved sales of 565 million euros in 2023. Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co. KG is the first major chocolate bar manufacturer to source only certified sustainable cocoa for its entire product portfolio, which includes the Ritter Sport and Amicelli brands. Ritter has proudly been a balance sheet climate-neutral company since 2020 – another example of its own purpose to do the right thing to create really good chocolate. The colorful Ritter Sport squares are sold in more than 100 countries around the world.

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